Bees

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Three Warre Hives

 

 

Principles for sustainable beekeeping

  • a hive that retains nest scent and heat.

• minimal use of high embodied energy materials in hive construction (e.g. plastics,

metals, glues, paints)

• a colony density supportable by the forage within range of the apiary

• good flower forage diversity

• bees winter on fully ripe honey from a wide range of flowers

• sugar fed only in emergency and only when no honey is available

• absolute minimum intervention (e.g. a maximum of two openings of the top of

the hive per year)

• no artificial swarming, i.e. no forcing of emergency requeening to make

increase

• no artificial queen breeding (work with queens raised under the swarm

impulse)

• comb built as freestyle as possible (i.e. no starter strips), subject only to local

legislation

• no manipulation of colony size (artificial brood spreading etc.)

• locally adapted bees

• beekeeper shares the honey crop with the bees

• no reuse of comb

• no antibiotics

• conditions for co-evolution of bee with pests (Varroa, small hive beetle) preserved,

i.e. minimal or no pesticide use (fluvalinate, tymol, organic acids)

• no spring stimulatory feeding

• no feeding pollen substitutes

• minimisation of fossil fuel energy consumption (e.g. apiaries within walking or

cycling distance)

Warre (The peoples ) Hive

We are looking into the use of Warre top bar hives instead of conventional national or commercial hives. These top bar hives recreate a more natural environment for the bees.Less honey but more wax is extracted and the bees are disturbed only once or twice a year. It is one of the bee keeping methods that meet some of the sustainability criterea outlined above.  Keep track of our progress on this page.

warre

minutes after the bees were introduced to a new hive